Guest view: What about it, Bob? | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Guest view: What about it, Bob?

Patrick Ronan

Dear Bob Attinger:

I have been quite amazed at how you are attempting to sway people’s minds about the new chamber and apparently are now trying to start your own. I know this issue has become very emotional to a lot of people, especially after a new executive director was chosen, but come on – twisting a few important figures to paint a very inaccurate picture of what is really going on is eventually going to catch up to you. But of course we don’t want facts getting in the way of a good “emotional” sales pitch.

The new chamber’s rent is not $25,000 a month. The rent on the Primm building is around that, but the new Lake Tahoe Chamber of Commerce South Shore is taking up less than one-seventh of the total space. The rest of the building is made up of the transient center, the visitor center, the county meeting rooms, the TDVA, the LTVA and the gaming alliance. All of these entities will be paying rent for their space. Why do you keep telling everyone that the chamber will be paying $25,000 a month? It’s just not true.

You apparently did some sort of survey of some members of the South Lake Tahoe Chamber members and are now telling everyone that 95 percent no longer want to have the merger continue. You always seem to forget to mention that less than 10 percent of the membership responded to your survey. Why is that? Did you forget to make personal phone calls to the rest of the members telling them about the $25,000 per month rent? Maybe because the 90 percent you missed were a little too smart to believe their elected board of directors would do something that stupid?

You seem to again have forgotten one of the main issues regarding merging the two chambers. Because of budget problems, both chambers cannot afford to operate as they have, trying to run the visitor centers and operating a chamber of commerce. That is why it was thought to be pretty clever to have the LTVA run the visitor centers and have one chamber represent all the business concerns. Bob, are you aware that the South Lake Tahoe Chamber visitor center is closed on weekends? Do you realize what our guests who come over Echo Summit and pull into the current visitor center sees? A dilapidated building that when you enter makes you feel like you just walked into the ’70s. Very impressive!

And when these people ask for the restrooms, we send them to a port-a-potty outside the building. That is how we currently greet our visitors. I haven’t noticed in any of your announcements how you are going to deal with this; or should we just hope the staff will work for free and that all our visitors appreciate the rustic approach. Those must be pretty cold seats in the winter.

I could go on and on about how both chamber boards voted decisively to go ahead with the merger – your own board on two occasions – how an all-member survey last year indicated the merger made sense, but again, don’t let all those facts get in the way of a good “emotional” sales pitch.

What about it Bob?

– Patrick Ronan is a California business owner.


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